Bangor City warn FAW of “serious implications” if 2019-20 football season is allowed to continue

Chris O’Neal (left) is calling for the 2019-20 football season in Wales to cease immediately

Bangor City spokesman Chris O’Neal has repeated his plea to the FAW to end the 2019-20 domestic soccer season immediately following a meeting of the national body with clubs today.

The FAW held a series of video conference sessions with clubs from JD Cymru Premier, North and South, which were led by head of competitions Andrew Howard and chief executive Jonathan Ford.

They included Bangor City, who Mr O’Neal represented at the meeting as part of the club’s management team.

The FAW has extended the season fixture suspension until June 12 due to the coronavirus pandemic.

At today’s meeting questionnaires were presented to each club operating in the top two tiers, offering four possible outcomes to vote on.

Options include
Continuation of season
Carrying on in an “alternative format”
Implementing a “premature termination” of the campaign.

The questionnaires are expected to be completed by Sunday, with the FAW due to make a final decision by next Wednesday, May 20.

Mr O’Neal shared his response to the FAW with Grassroots North Wales this evening.

It says: “Board members, I am fully aware that you sat as a board and made a decision to end the playing season of junior football and academy football based on health and safety reasons.

Unless you are medically qualified or have scientific facts to support that there is no greater risk to players of the senior game than there is to the players of the (level of the) game whereby you have already ended the season, I believe you are duty bound to follow the same stance and urge you to make that no further football will be played in Wales for the season 2019/20.

“Whilst I understand you are tasked with a very difficult decision, the health and safety of the players must be the main point in your decision-making process.

“I urge that you also consider the implication that could follow if you as a board proceed with the playing season against the wishes of us as a club when our stance on the matter is to end the season based on health and safety grounds.

“It is also important to note that if you as a board took the decision to continue and a player, official, or person involved in the game becomes unwell then we believe you as an association could be held liable and this matter should also be discussed with your insurers if you wish to continue the season.

“From an insurance point of view I believe any person who therefore contracts COVID-19 as a result of participating in football could pursue a claim against the association when that member club documents in their health and safety risk assessments that the continuation of football in Wales was against their will.

“May I on behalf of Bangor City FC thank you for your time in this matter and please do the right thing and ‘END’ the season with immediate effect.”

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